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UAW agrees to drop Jobs Bank at GM


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UAW agrees to drop Jobs Bank at GM

David Barkholz
Automotive News
January 28, 2009 - 11:15 am ET
UPDATED: 1/28/09 4:09 p.m. EST

The UAW has agreed to let General Motors terminate its Jobs Bank, providing the automaker with the same bailout concession made to Chrysler LLC last week, GM confirmed today.

Starting Monday, the 1,600 GM workers now in the Jobs Bank must go on state unemployment and GM-funded supplemental benefits, said GM spokesman Tony Sapienza.

The combined unemployment and supplemental pay represents about 72 percent of standard weekly wages. The Jobs Bank represents nearly 100 percent.

The government made elimination of the Jobs Bank a condition for about $17.4 billion in rescue loans approved for GM and Chrysler last month.

The money-saving changes had to be negotiated with the UAW. Last week, the union let Chrysler shift its Jobs Bank workers onto unemployment and supplemental pay.

GM and Chrysler must show labor and debt restructuring by Feb. 17, when the government will begin a review of their viability.

Ford executives say they also are interested in getting the same labor savings from the UAW as GM and Chrysler. Ford spokeswoman Marcey Evans would not comment on specific discussions with the UAW.

Sapienza said GM also is discussing supplemental pay with the union as part of current negotiations. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., criticized the provision repeatedly when the automakers faced Congress for the loans late last year.

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